American War Crimes Continue

The decision by the US to send cluster bombs to Ukraine exposes all of the pseudo-left defenders of American involvement in the war in Ukraine, including those in the Democratic Socialists of America who condemn “preemptive hostility to US imperialism,” as shameless apologists for the US military’s war crimes.

In fact, the US-led war against Russia in Ukraine is a war for American global hegemony, in which Ukrainians are mere cannon fodder. This is entirely in line with the series of criminal wars of aggression waged by the United States over the past half-century.

During the Vietnam War, the US dropped approximately 413,130 tons of cluster bombs in Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam. Many of these submunitions failed to explode on impact and continue to pose a significant threat to civilian populations, leading to countless injuries and deaths decades after the end of the war.

During the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003, the United States regularly used cluster munitions to attack civilian areas, in what Amnesty International called “an indiscriminate attack and a grave violation of international humanitarian law.”

In Iraq, the devastation of cluster bombs was compounded by the use of depleted uranium munitions, which, according to one study, led the people of Fallujah to experience higher rates of cancer, leukemia, infant mortality and sexual mutations than those recorded among survivors in Hiroshima and Nagasaki in the years after those Japanese cities were incinerated by US atomic bombs in 1945.

During the 2001 invasion of Afghanistan, cluster bombs killed and injured hundreds of civilians and littered the countryside with deadly unexploded ordnance. The United States has been implicated in the use of cluster munitions via its support for Saudi-led forces in the Yemen conflict.

Over 110 countries have ratified the Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM), which prohibits the use, transfer and stockpiling of cluster munitions. The United States, which has killed more people with cluster munitions than any other country, is not a signatory.

A 2008 report by the United Nations explains the devastating impact cluster munitions have on the populations where they are used by the United States and its allies:

Over three decades after cluster munitions were used in Laos and Vietnam, they continue to cause death and injury, disrupt the economic activities of ordinary people, and hamper the implementation of development projects there. Even rapid large-scale clearance efforts, such as those that have been implemented in Kosovo and Lebanon, cannot prevent cluster munition contamination from having an impact. In Kosovo, civilian casualties from cluster munitions are still being reported, and in Lebanon, despite clearance beginning immediately after the 2006 conflict, it could not prevent casualties among the population as they returned to their homes and livelihoods.

The report continues:

Submunitions can prevent or hinder the safe return of refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) and hamper humanitarian, peace-building, and development efforts. Unexploded cluster munitions also pose a physical threat to humanitarian workers and peacekeepers.

The White House claims to have discussed and deliberated the move with the utmost care. The decision-makers would have been fully briefed on these known consequences of cluster munitions, and proceeded with them regardless.

Reporting on the decision by Biden to send the weapons, the New York Times wrote, “Mr. Biden has come under steady pressure from President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine, who argues that the munitions—which disperse tiny, deadly bomblets—are the best way to kill Russians who are dug into trenches and blocking Ukraine’s counteroffensive to retake territory.”

The role of Zelensky in promoting a decision to send weapons that will maim Ukrainian children for generations sums up the role of his government, which serves as an instrument in enforcing the will of the NATO powers over the Ukrainian population.

This latest escalation by the United States must be seen as a warning. Washington will stop at nothing to prevent further military setbacks for its proxy force in Kiev and achieve its military goal of inflicting a strategic defeat on Russia. The same homicidal logic that justifies the deployment of depleted uranium rounds and cluster bombs will be used to justify even greater and more reckless crimes, from the direct entry of NATO into the war to the deployment and use of nuclear weapons.


Israeli War Crimes in the West Bank

The brutal reality in the West Bank under Israeli occupation: ongoing and systematic violence and repression against the Palestinians. Both Israeli soldiers and ultra-right settlers are murdering people, shooting them down, destroying their homes, pillaging the land where they have lived for centuries.

The government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is a coalition of right-wing parties, including outright fascists, with a large base in the illegal settlements on the West Bank. The regime is preparing for the logical conclusion of this campaign of terror and murder: the forcible displacement of millions of Palestinians and the incorporation of the West Bank into Israel.

Leaders of the fascist parties speak openly of their determination to remove the entire Arab population of the West Bank and annex the territory. In this, they are modeling themselves on the pogroms against Arabs which accompanied the foundation of Israel in 1947-48. This campaign, which today would be called “ethnic cleansing,” transformed the Arab-majority territory of Palestine into the Jewish-majority state of Israel.

The Israeli aggression on the West Bank is taking place with the full approval of the US government. The Biden administration certainly green-lighted the operation in advance, and voiced approval of it after the fact.

White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Wednesday:

We have said this many times: We support, certainly, Israel’s security and right to defend its people against Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and other terrorist groups… Israel is a close ally and partner, and we are in touch with the national security and, certainly, the defense officials. So don’t have anything to read out on our conversation, but we are in regular contact.

The coverage in the corporate media took its cue from Biden in its indifference to the barbarism displayed by Israel on the West Bank, where military violence has been combined with rampages by armed settlers against Palestinian towns and villages to enforce the increasingly stifling grip of the occupation regime. At least 155 Palestinians have been killed by soldiers and settlers so far this year, the largest total since the second intifada in 2002.

Meanwhile, the media witch-hunts anyone who criticizes the conduct of the state of Israel, condemning them as anti-Semites. This is especially directed against public figures, most recently the musician Roger Waters, founder of the rock band Pink Floyd, who has been a principled supporter of the Palestinian people for many decades and is now one of the few prominent opponents of the US-NATO war in Ukraine.

The American media maintains a shameless double standard in relation to the war in Ukraine and the ongoing attacks on Palestinians living in the West Bank. While covering up Israeli violence and dispossession in the occupied territories, the media has been engaged for more than a year in a hysterical campaign claiming the Russian military is engaging in genocidal crimes in Ukraine.



It’s a relief to see women turning their backs on ambition.

Personal growth and self-actualization. They flout expectations.

Once hard-working and socially responsible, gravitating instead

Towards indolence and self-sabotage. They quit their jobs when.

Bored, rejecting stable relationships, unwilling to kowtow.

We should be celebrating this narcissism, fecklessness and sloth.

It’s liberating. Who among us has not wanted to ditch routine.

I’m tired of single-girl sitcoms of the past, following

Arc of the bildungsroman, in which the protagonist.

Ready to meet the challenges of becoming an adult.

New story lines are narratives of unbecoming, featuring.

Protagonists undermine their own growth and education.

Are more likely to be mired in failure than striving.

For wedding rings and corner offices. This is the crux.

Audiences expect cheery competence from women.Yet.

Tolerate laziness, violence and rule-breaking in men.

The female antihero is a profound threat to the status quo.

A time when women are being encouraged to rule the world.

The very least, expected to keep it together.

The unbecoming heroine is a timely reminder women needn’t.

Be responsible, self-improving and productive to be valued.


What’s Next for NATO in Ukraine? The Nuclear Option?

After two weeks it’s clear Ukraine’s “spring counteroffensive,” promoted for months by the US media, has made no significant headway, while the Ukrainian armed forces have taken devastating physical losses.

Ukrainian officials claim to have retaken 38 square miles since the start of the offensive. These scraps of territory have been purchased with as many as 1,000 casualties per day, putting the total at up to 12,000 since the start of the offensive.

Russian officials have released video of armored vehicles being destroyed by missiles, drones and long-range artillery, including over one dozen advanced Leopard 2 tanks and Bradley infantry fighting vehicles.

For the first year and a half of the conflict, the US and NATO powers have operated on the premise that they could prosecute the war by sending ever more advanced weapons to Ukraine, while letting Ukrainians serve as cannon fodder on the battlefield.

With cold indifference to the catastrophic loss of human life, the Biden administration has sought to fight the war to the last Ukrainian. But the problem with this strategy is that NATO is running out of Ukrainians to send to their deaths.

Hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian soldiers have been killed or injured so far. This is a substantial portion of the fighting-age population, leading the Zelensky government to more desperate measures to find new bodies to throw at the front lines.

Against this backdrop, the defence ministers of NATO countries concluded a two-day summit Friday aimed at finalizing plans for a military alliance between NATO and Ukraine. On Thursday, a Biden administration official told CNN that they are “open” to an accelerated plan for Ukraine to join NATO.

This will be the content of the upcoming NATO summit in Vilnius, Lithuania, whether through Ukraine directly joining NATO or in the form of the provision of “security guarantees.”

The real issue, however, is not Ukraine entering NATO, but NATO “entering” Ukraine through a vast escalation of its involvement in the war. The only reason for accelerating Ukraine’s entry into NATO is to create the framework for such an escalation.

The entire credibility of NATO has been staked on an effort to hurl the Russians over the border, generating a crisis that would lead to the collapse of the Putin government. The logic of escalation leads inexorably to direct NATO intervention in the conflict.

Every time the US and NATO powers have claimed they would not do something in Ukraine, they have gone ahead and done it, from the provision of battle tanks and fighter jets, to weaponry that has been used to attack Russian soil.

What will be the next “red line” that NATO will cross in response to the deteriorating military situation in Ukraine? There are several possibilities:

First, the creation of a “no-fly zone” and the direct engagement of Russian forces by NATO aircraft.

Second, the direct deployment of NATO troops into the war zone.

And third, the deployment or even use of tactical nuclear weapons by NATO to prevent a Russian victory in the conflict.


Unwinding Zelensky

Who really is Zelensky? In a a bag of carrots he’s a populist demagogue and a manipulator. An autocrat at the head of a regime that can best be described as proto-fascist, without endorsing Putin’s pathetic alibi of a “Nazified” Ukraine.

With his demagogic cry of “the people against the elites”, his rudimentary electoral programme, his false promises to fight corruption that were forgotten as soon as he was elected, and his brutal authoritarian leanings, Zelensky is a perfect example of western populism.

It’s light years from his carefully crafted media image. Just last year, the Pandora Papers showed how he and his close circle benefited from a network of offshore companies. Since the Russian invasion, pundits appear to have conveniently “forgotten” these facts.

According to Transparency International’s latest corruption index, Ukraine under Zelensky scored 32 out of 100, on a scale where 0 means highly corrupt and 100 means very clean.

It was just a few points ahead of Russia, and on par with countries ravaged by corruption, such as Zambia, Algeria and Egypt. This was the case even before the West began pumping billions into Ukraine.

As for Zelensky’s approval ratings, they were in free-fall just before the war broke out, with 55 percent of Ukrainian voters saying they were against his candidacy for a second term.

Zelensky was thus literally saved by Putin’s February invasion, which has proved to be a real miracle for him and his entourage of cronies.

The Kyiv regime also exhibits a growing number of proto-fascistic characteristics: the cult of the personality, which turns the head of state into a venerated and untouchable figure.

The militarisation of society; the saturation of media and cultural spaces with war propaganda; the constant staging of a crude warrior machismo, not unlike Putin’s; systemic corruption; and of course, the integration into the regular army of neo-Nazi groups, such as the Azov regiment.